2018 Economic Calendar
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Personal Income and Outlays  
Released On 5/31/2018 8:30:00 AM For Apr, 2018
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Personal Income - M/M change0.3 %0.2 %0.3 %0.2 % to 0.5 %0.3 %
Consumer Spending - M/M change0.4 %0.5 %0.4 %0.2 % to 0.5 %0.6 %
PCE Price Index M/M change0.0 %0.2 %0.2 % to 0.4 %0.2 %
Core PCE price index - M/M change0.2 %0.1 %0.1 % to 0.3 %0.2 %
PCE Price Index Y/Y change2.0 %2.0 %2.0 % to 2.2 %2.0 %
Core PCE price index - Yr/Yr change1.9 %1.8 %1.8 %1.8 % to 2.1 %1.8 %

Highlights
Income isn't quite as soft and spending isn't quite as strong as they look while inflation readings are modest and steady. Income rose 0.3 percent in April but the wages & salaries component shows a solid 0.4 percent gain. Spending jumped 0.6 percent in the month led, however, by a 0.9 percent gain for nondurables which reflects April's rise in gas prices.

Both the overall PCE price index and the core rose 0.2 percent in the month, the latter edging above Econoday's consensus by 1 tenth, with the year-on-year rates hitting expectations, at 2.0 percent overall and 1.8 percent for the core.

Of note for the core is a revision to March's year-on-year rate which has been downgraded to 1.8 percent. Also of note is a 2 tenths dip in the savings rate to an even lower 2.8 percent which suggests April's spending, to a degree, was funded at the expense of savings.

Yet gas-driven or not, the rise in spending marks a strong opening for second-quarter consumer spending and, together with yesterday's big improvement in April goods trade, are both early indications of strength for second-quarter GDP. More fundamentally, concerns in yesterday's Beige Book that consumer spending was moderating look perhaps unwarranted and that steady growth, backed by respectable income, is now the more accurate description. For inflation, no alarms in this report with the overall rate holding on target for a second straight month but room still left to run for the core in its awaited approach to the Fed's 2 percent line. Note that the Fed's goal is to bring both the overall price index and the core to the 2 percent target and then to hold them there as steady as possible.

Consensus Outlook
Personal income is seen rising a moderate 0.3 percent in April while consumer spending, in what will be the first major input into second-quarter GDP, is expected to increase 0.4 percent. The core PCE price index, which excludes both food and energy and which is the most closely watched of all inflation readings, is seen rising very marginally, only 0.1 percent higher on the month for yearly deceleration to 1.8 percent vs March's 1.9 percent.

Definition
Personal income represents the income that households receive from all sources including wages and salaries, fringe benefits such as employer contributions to private pension plans, proprietors' income, income from rent, dividends and interest and transfer payments such as Social Security and unemployment compensation. Personal contributions for social insurance are subtracted from personal income.

Personal consumption expenditures are the major portion of personal outlays, which also include personal interest payments and transfer payments. Personal consumption expenditures are divided into durable goods, nondurable goods and services. These figures are the monthly analogues to the quarterly consumption expenditures in the GDP report, available in nominal and real (inflation-adjusted) dollars. Economic performance is more appropriately measured after the effects of inflation are removed.

Each month, the Bureau of Economic Analysis also compiles the personal consumption expenditure price index, also known as the PCE price index. This inflation index measures a basket of goods and services that is updated annually in contrast to the CPI, which measures a fixed basket.  Why Investors Care
 
[Chart]
Changes in taxes or social security cost of living adjustments can cause some sharp variations in monthly disposable income growth. However, on the whole, monthly changes in disposable income fluctuate less than monthly changes in personal consumption expenditures.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
 
[Chart]
Monthly changes in personal consumption expenditures are usually skewed by large changes in spending on durable goods. Spending on nondurable goods and services tend to be less volatile from one month to the next.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
 
 

2018 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/293/13/294/305/316/297/318/309/2810/2911/2912/21
Release For: DecJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNov
 


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